Attorney General William Barr said he is not going to be influenced by anyone amid criticism from Democrats after the Department of Justice filed a sentencing memorandum in the Roger Stone case.
Barr told ABC News on Thursday that President Donald Trump has “never asked me to do anything in a criminal case” and is making decisions on “what I think is the right thing to do.”
But, he added, that “I think its time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases,” adding that he has “a problem” with some of the presidents posts on Twitter.
Top Justice Department officials intervened in the sentencing of Stone, a former campaign adviser to President Donald Trump, who was convicted of lying to Congress, witness tampering, and obstruction of justice. Prosecutors had said that Stone should serve seven to nine years in prison.
“To have public statements and tweets made about the department, about people in the department, our men and women here, about cases pending in the department and about judges before whom we have cases, make it impossible for me to do my job,” Barr said, “and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that were doing our work with integrity.”
The ABC interviewer asked him about whether he is prepared to field any criticism from the president about his public comments.
“Im not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody … whether its Congress, a newspaper editorial board, or the president,” Barr said. “Im gonna do what I think is right. And you know … I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me.”
Barr told ABC that he told his staff that the Department of Justice was going to amend its recommendation on Stones sentencing. Hours later, Trump wrote that it was a “horrible and unfair situation” that has befallen Stone.
Four prosecutors involved left the case earlier this week over the incident.
The attorney general said that he was placed in a rock-and-a-hard-place situation.
“Do you go forward with what you think is the right decision or do you pull back because of the tweet? And that just sort of illustrates how disruptive these tweets can be,” Barr said in the interview.
When he was asked about Trumps Twitter posts, Barr added: “I have a problem with some of, some of the tweets. As I said at Read More – Source